articleimg-1
May 05, 2016

Fears for Hungary's security if Turkish citizens are granted visa-free access to the EU

The security of the Hungarian people is non-negotiable, the foreign minister said

The European Commission’s plans to allow Turkish citizens visa-free access to the EU could affect the security of Hungarians analysts fear.

During an interview with news agency MTI, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó was asked his opinion on the fact that Turkish citizens were being granted visa-free admittance on a conditional basis.

“The security of the Hungarian people is non-negotiable,” he said, following a meeting of Visegrád Group (V4) and Eastern Partnership foreign ministers in Prague this week.

“Only countries that conform to all the requirements can receive visa-free access to the territory of the European Union, because the security of the people of Europe, including the Hungarian people, cannot be the subject of a deal,” the minister stressed.

“We would be endangering the credibility of the EU if Turkey were to be afforded visa-free travel before Georgia or Ukraine because of a deal,” he said.

While Georgia and Ukraine have been working for years to conform to requirements for receiving visa-free travel, Turkey would be afforded the same preferential treatment because of its agreement with Brussels on refugees, he concluded.